To hopefully close the book on an awful story, the Lancaster County man who shot and killed an Amish-owned horse has been given 1-2 years in prison, plus probation (hat tip to commenter City Slicker):

According to testimony at Diggs’ March preliminary hearing, Diggs was a passenger in his own car when the horse was shot last Nov. 24 in East Lampeter Township.

Horse owner Levi Lapp was driving his buggy about 9 p.m. on North Ronks Road when a car passed them from behind. In the buggy were his wife, holding their baby, and their children, aged 7, 9, and 12.

Lapp testified he heard a noise like a firecracker, but didn’t think much of it. The horse startled, but Lapp was able to control it and get to his home about a mile away.

At home, Lapp noticed blood and a hole in the horse’s lower left side. A veterinarian was called, but the horse died before the vet arrived.

Amish Horse Shooter

The shooting occurred last November in East Lampeter Township. Photo by Ed C.

Police also found stolen property on searching Timothy Diggs’ home last December.

Diggs apologized for his actions, and cited his abuse of cough medicine as an influence.

Judge David Ashworth promised to “put you in jail for as long as I can” if Diggs should land in trouble again.

I don’t know what you think, but to me this feels like a light sentence, especially given the danger posed to the family. What if Diggs’ aim had been poorer?

Does the punishment fit the crime?

Since we’re on the subject, you might recall a similar story: the 2012 hit-and-run drunk driver in Indiana who intentionally struck and killed an Amish buggy horse. If you missed it, that person received 18 months of county work release.

Burglary will apparently get you much harsher punishment than killing horses and endangering their owners.

Word came Friday that a man who burglarized over a dozen Lancaster Amish and Old Order Mennonite homes will serve 7 to 16 years. Drug addiction again plays a role.

I know a lot of factors go into sentencing criminals. Sometimes sentences don’t seem to make sense. I do know one thing. It’s not a job I would want.

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